SA mining to continue strong jobs growth

Strong jobs growth in South Australia’s mining sector is expected to continue this year, with a survey estimating an average increase in employment of nearly 20% in 2008.

Strong jobs growth in South Australia’s mining sector is expected to continue this year, with a survey estimating an average increase in employment of nearly 20% in 2008.

Employment demand will be highest in the key skills provided by engineers, geologists, electricians, boilermakers, fitters and truck drivers.”

The SACES survey found the work force of the 65 companies responding to its questionnaire is expected to grow by 19.5% to 12,200 in 2008, up from 10,200 in 2007.

The survey was jointly commissioned by Primary Industries and Resources S.A., the Department of Further Education, Employment, Science and Technology, and the Department of Trade and Economic Development and assisted by the Resource Employment Skills Alliance.

The SACES survey of employment growth for occupational groups in the mining sector estimated:

· a 26.0% average annual increase in jobs for labourers and related workers

· a 24.7% average annual increase in jobs for professionals such as engineers

· a 20.7% average annual increase in jobs for trades and other workers

· and an 18.3% average annual increase in intermediate production and transport workers

Australian Bureau of Statistics employment figures for South Australia’s rapidly developing minerals sector during the past two years have shown a high degree of variability of up to 30% from quarter to quarter.

Since 1997, the compound annual growth rate of employment has been a healthy 13% with the sector’s share of total State employment rising to 1.4% in 2007 from 0.5% in 1997.

The survey estimates that the mining sector’s total share of State employment is to rise again this year to 1.7%.

The SACES survey found in the past four years, the mining sector in South Australia has experienced a boom in exploration, which has been reflected in jobs growth and the development of new mines.

Mineral exploration expenditure has been on a strong upward trend in South Australia, growing faster than the national average.

South Australia accounts for nearly 16% of national expenditure, up from just 3.6% a decade ago.

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